Sam's Apron Alternative Bias Tape Binding Method - Helen's Closet Blog

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Alternative Bias Binding Method

Thank you so much for your kind reception of our latest free pattern, the Sam Apron! We are so happy that you are excited about this pattern as we are. Sam is easy to fit, easy to sew, and features a ton of customization options! If you haven’t already, you can grab Sam by signing up for our newsletter here.

Introducing the Sam Apron, a free apron pattern from Helen's Closet!

Today we want to cover the alternative bias binding method used in this pattern, which may be different from what you are used to. The bias tape is wider and there is only one fold in it. We find this method to be a little easier for beginners, and the added weight of the multiple layers of fabric help provide structure to the curved sides of the apron bib.

If you are using store-bought bias tape or simply prefer the standard single or double fold tape, feel free to use those methods instead! We have a photographed tutorial for how to do a traditional bias binding that you can refer to here.

What Is Bias Tape?
Bias tape is a folded strip of fabric that has been cut on the true bias (a 45 degree angle to the selvage). Bias tape is flexible and stretchy and can be used to finish edges or seams on garments.

The Sam Apron includes pattern pieces for the bias tape (6) that you can cut out along with the rest of your pattern. If you prefer, you can cut this pieces from a contrast fabric, or use pre-made bias tape instead.

Sam's Apron Alternative Bias Tape Binding Method - Helen's Closet Blog

With wrong sides together, press the bias strips in half lengthwise.

Pin the folded bias strips to the right side of the curved apron bib, matching up the three raw edges of fabric.

Sam's Apron Alternative Bias Tape Binding Method - Helen's Closet Blog
Sam's Apron Alternative Bias Tape Binding Method - Helen's Closet Blog

Sew the bias strips to the curved sides of the apron bib using a 3/8” (1 cm) seam allowance. Stop and start 1” (2.5 cm) from the side and 1 1/2” (3.8 cm) from the top of the apron bib.

Sam's Apron Alternative Bias Tape Binding Method - Helen's Closet Blog
Sam's Apron Alternative Bias Tape Binding Method - Helen's Closet Blog

Trim off the excess bias tape and grade the seam allowances by trimming one bias tape seam allowance down to 1/8″ (0.3 cm) and the other one to 1/4″ (0.6 cm). Leave the apron seam allowance as-is. This will help reduce bulky seams.

Sam's Apron Alternative Bias Tape Binding Method - Helen's Closet Blog

Clip the seam allowance along the curved edged, close to but not past the stitch line. This is very important for helping the seam lay flat when we flip the bias tape around.

Sam's Apron Alternative Bias Tape Binding Method - Helen's Closet Blog

Press the bias strip and seam allowances away from the apron. Understitch the bias strip to the seam allowance, sewing 1/8” (0.3 cm) from the seam. This will help attach the seam allowances to the bias tape and prevent any edges from showing on the right side of the garment.

Sam's Apron Alternative Bias Tape Binding Method - Helen's Closet Blog

Press the bias strip towards the wrong side of the apron. Topstitch 1/8” (0.3 cm) from the inner edge of the bias strip. Sew with the wrong side of the apron facing up here so you can see what you are doing.

Sam's Apron Alternative Bias Tape Binding Method - Helen's Closet Blog
Sam's Apron Alternative Bias Tape Binding Method - Helen's Closet Blog
Sam's Apron Alternative Bias Tape Binding Method - Helen's Closet Blog

And voila! You’ve now neatly finished the bib edges of the Sam Apron. You can continue on with the rest of the pattern instructions. Happy sewing!

Introducing the Sam Apron, a free apron pattern from Helen's Closet!
About the author

Helen

Helen Wilkinson is the designer and founder of Helen's Closet Patterns. She also co-hosts the Love to Sew Podcast! Helen is obsessed with all things sewing and strives to share her passion and knowledge with the sewing community.

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